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Federal land along upper section of Gunflint Trail closed due to wildfire risk

Gunflint Trail federal land closure Aug. 25
Gunflint Trail federal land closure Aug. 25

The Forest Service is closing Superior National Forest lands along the upper portion of the Gunflint Trail due to fires in the vicinity and limited availability of firefighting resources.

The closure includes all forest lands along the Gunflint Trail beginning at the Cook County 92 intersection near Poplar Lake to the end of the Gunflint Trail.

WTIP shared news of the land closure Wednesday morning on the Daybreak program. No section of the Gunflint Trail is closed to traffic, the Forest Service said during the interview. The Gunflint Trail remains open for all property owners. The Trail is also open to all guests who are staying at resorts or vacation rentals on the upper Gunflint Trail at this time. People are allowed to drive up the Gunflint Trail to visit resorts for dining purposes, for example. 

An example of a popular area that is closed under this order is the Magnetic Rock Hiking Trail, according to Forest Service officials.

Also included in the closure are the Trails End Campground and the Iron Lake Campground. All dispersed campsites in the upper section of the Gunflint Trail are also closed at this time.

The Forest will reevaluate this closure and determine whether or not it needs to be extended due to active fires. 

This closure is consistent with the Cook County Sheriff’s pre-evacuation area for the upper Gunflint Trail area due to the John Ek Fire, the Forest Service said. 

Tofte District Ranger Ellen Bogardus-Szymaniak shared the news on WTIP Aug. 25 at 7:30 a.m. during a live interview. Audio below from her interview with Joe Friedrichs.
 

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